Saturday, September 5, 2020

#461 : Peter Parcek - Mississippi Suitcase


2020 – Peter Parcek Lightning Records

 By Phillip Smith; Sep. 5, 2020

Boston-based blues guitarist Peter Parcek has hit a homerun with his third and latest album, Mississippi Suitcase.  I can certainly see why he was compared to the great Eric Clapton, by living-legend Buddy Guy.  This new eleven-track album is fully loaded with fabulous songs played with a fine-tuned finesse.  Backing Parcek in the studio is Tim Carman on drums, Tom West on keyboards, and Marc Hickox on electric bass,        

Parcek starts the album off with “The World is Upside Down”, an original down-and-dirty blues tune fitting for the times today.  Slathered in that North Mississippi hill country blues, this attention-grabber is loaded with wonderfully swampy slide guitar.  It nicely slides right into a captivating cover of Sleepy John Estes’ “Everybody Oughta Make a Change”.  It’s such a rush to hear Parcek sink his guitar pick into this one.  He takes a slightly psychedelic turn, breaking into Peter Green’s “The Supernatural” which first appeared on John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers’ A Hard Road album.  It’s a beautiful instrumental.  Luther Dickinson and Mickey Raphael make a guest appearance on an exuberant take on Cousin Joe’s “Life’s a One Way Ticket”.   It’s so cool to hear Parcek go toe-to-toe with Dickinson while Raphael is ripping it up on harp. 

Two unexpected but very notable covers on this album include an intoxicating instrumental of The Beatles’ “Elenor Rigby” and a killer rendering of Lou Reed’s “Waiting For the Man”.  Parcek definitely makes them both his own.  I love them both. 

Hearing the way Parcek pours himself into his performances on this album, is a big part of the allure of why I adore this album.  Mississippi Suitcase is such a splendid recording.



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